A joint project between Landcare Australia and Woolworths will award up to $15 000 for individual farms or organisations to support projects improving water use, the carbon footprint of farming or nutrient management.
In a bid to encourage, develop and improve sustainable farming practises throughout Australia, the project has made $150 000 available, which will be awarded to projects that best fit the criteria.
Pat McEntee, Woolworths General Manager Fresh Food, said the project is an important investment into the future of the Australian agriculture sector.
“As Woolworths continues to invest in Australian farmers, the Fresh Food Future open grants program provides farming groups and organisations with a great opportunity to support and develop new ways to increase the sustainability of their operations,” he said.
According to chief executive of Landcare Australia, Heather Campbell, the innovation in the farming industry is often overlooked, and this project plans to reward some of the new ideas Australian farmers are coming up with all the time.
“Having seen the incredibly innovative projects funded through the Woolworths Fresh Food Future open grants program last year, I am delighted that we can continue to support the sustainable agriculture sector in this way and cannot wait to see what other fantastic projects come our way through this year’s program,” she said.
The Australian farming industry has had a rough trot of it lately, with the average farmer aged over 60, and nowhere near enough new workers coming through the ranks to fill the void left when they retire.
Children in Australia even think that yoghurt grows on trees and cotton socks are an animal product, a report buy the Australia Council of Educational Research found, and agriculture degrees across the country are being discontinued as enrolment numbers continue to dwindle.
Dairy farming has been deemed the second worst job, based on physical demands, work environment, income, stress and hiring outlook, and farmers are leaving the industry in droves as they struggle to make ends meet in the supermarket milk price wars.
How much extra support do you think the farming industry needs? Do Aussie children need better education about faming?